Jack Adrian began the Deathlands series back in 1986. But after the first few books, he was unable to continue, and Laurence James, AKA James Axler, took over the series. The series now spans over fifty novels, with Laurence James responsible for writing all the novels up to and including Eclipse at Noon. The other novels, starting from 'Stone Face' with the exception of 'Crucible of Time' have been written by other writers. James Axler is the house name for Gold Eagle Books.
Time, and the fallout of a nuclear holocaust, have ravaged 21st century America, but one fundamental impulse of human nature remains: the will to survive. And only the strongest do survive. Men like Ryan Cawdor, whose inner strength and stubborn resolve continue to defy the worst that Deathlands offers. With grim determination, he and his warrior group continue to face the stark and brutal choices of this new world that are often not choices at all, but imperatives. Act first, ask questions later.
A cold sense of déjà vu becomes reality as the group emerges from a gateway they'd survived before—a grim graveyard of lost friends and nightmares. The consuming need to escape the dangerous melancholy of the place forces Ryan and company onto the frozen tundra, where an even greater menace awaits. The forbidding land harbors a dying tribe—cursed members of the ancient Inuit, who seize the arrival of Ryan and his band as their last hope to appease angry gods…by offering them up as human sacrifice. In the Deathlands, the price for survival is the constant fear of death.
After a nuclear blast all but vaporized the Western Hemisphere in the late twenty-first century, America became known as Deathlands, a hellhole that has proved itself a formidable foe in the fight for survival—a place where the will to see another day comes down to raw courage and a good aim. Ryan Cawdor and his warrior group roam the vast and violent landscape, fighting to live and living to fight for a better life, knowing that death may not be the only way out, but it's the quickest.
DESTROY THE DESTROYERS
In a land steeped in ancient legend, power and destruction, the crumbling ruins of what was once Mexico City is now under siege by a bloodthirsty tribe of aboriginal muties. Emerging from a gateway into the partially submerged ruins of this once great city, Ryan and his group ally themselves with a fair and just baron caught in a treacherous power struggle with a dangerous rival. An internecine war foreshadows ultimate destruction of the valley at a time when unity of command and purpose offers the only hope against a terrible fate…. In the Deathlands everyone has a future. Some will wish they didn't.
No one waits long for trouble in Deathlands—it's everywhere in the remains of a nuke-altered civilization. The American dream was annihilated more than a century ago by the country's own unchecked power play. But the worst may be yet to come.
Built upon a predark military installation in former California, a ville called Progress could be the utopia Ryan Cawdor and his companions have been seeking. A place where humanity and technology thrive, it's the nucleus of a new hope for Deathlands. The successful replacement of Ryan's missing eye with a cybernetic prosthetic nearly convinces the group that their days of surviving hell are behind them. Then they discover that the high tech in Progress isn't designed to enhance human life, but to destroy it. To block the final assault, the companions must stop Ryan from becoming a willing pawn in the eradication of mankind.
Existence after Skydark is a gamble against grim odds—winners and losers decided by guns, jack and raw nerve. Still, one intrepid group pushes on, working to understand the secrets of preDark tech at the heart of nuke-altered America. Because keeping hope alive is the next best thing to a good shot at finding something better.
LAW OF SUDDEN DEATH
Baron Crabbe is dangerously high on legends of the Trader and rumors of a secret cache. He occupies a redoubt but the old tech remains unfathomable. His ace in the hole is Ryan Cawdor and his band. Prisoners at blasterpoint, they're ordered to use the matter-transfer units to secure the whereabouts of the imagined weapons stockpile. Ryan knows the truth—and it won't help Crabbe. But the only option is to play along with the crazed Baron's scheme and make the dangerous jumps in a limited window of time. Staying alive is all about buying time—waiting for their one chance to chill their captors.